Accepting compliments. It seems like a simple thing. Someone says something nice to you, you thank them and enjoy the fact that you’ve been seen and acknowledged. Yet, in our society, we’re taught that we must be “humble” so we have forgotten how to accept compliments just in case we get a big head and become proud.
Hogwash! One of my purposes in life is to get people to accept compliments graciously. Pretending that you aren’t worthy of a compliment doesn’t serve anyone.
Here are the top 3 reasons to accept compliments:
1. It is a gift. When someone takes the time to notice you, it is a little out of the ordinary. Most of us spend a good portion of our waking hours wrapped up in our own thoughts, issues, concerns. A compliment shows that for that moment, the complimentor stepped out of their own hamster wheel in their brains and noticed you. Consider every compliment as a big box wrapped in shiny paper with a big bow. Would you throw that in the garbage? NO! So don’t throw a compliment away by not acknowledging it with a sincere thank you.
2. It allows you to see outside yourself. You, like everyone else, are on a hamster wheel in your head. We spend so much time worrying about how we look, how we will be perceived, whether or not we will be accepted. A compliment shows you that you are beautiful, you are seen in a positive light, you are accepted. Why would you not appreciate that confirmation? Get out of your own stories and criticisms for at least that moment and say thank you!
3. It builds confidence. Allowing yourself to see that what others see may actually be correct builds your sense of self. If you think you are unattractive and someone keeps telling you you’re gorgeous, why argue? If someone tells you you’re talented when you think you don’t measure up, why not accept it? If someone tells you they think you’re amazing, who are you to say that you aren’t?
My challenge to you is:
- Accept compliments graciously. Get in the habit of smiling and saying thank you. Before you know it, you won’t even need to think about it anymore.
- Keep track of the compliments you receive. Get some stickers and keep a notebook. For every compliment you receive – and accept graciously – record it with a sticker. Or get a noise on your phone that you press to reinforce the compliments you’ve received. Be creative! A client of mine used stickers and put them around her mirror. She used to look in the mirror and tear herself down. Now, she says, all she sees is how beautiful she is and how much she is loved.
- Look for patterns. As you start to listen to compliments rather than deflecting them, you’ll start to see patterns. Maybe a certain color or outfit gets more compliments than others. Maybe one thing you do at work is acknowledged more than others. A certain body part might get more notice. Play up these parts of you, be your best, put your best self forward and see how that changes your life and your perception of self.
Have fun accepting compliments! You deserve every single one of them.
Next time we will discuss the difference between compliments and expectations.
Christie Mawer – The Bad Kitty